Craftsy

Christmas Stollen and 10 Bread Baking Gift Ideas

Christmas Stollen is a great tradition this time of year. A sweet loaf that is studded with fruit, spiced with cardamom and a little treat of almond paste runs through it. Once it comes out of the oven we dust it with a thick layer of confectioners’ sugar to look like the snow outside. If there is any left the next day it makes amazing French toast. This is a loaf that also makes a great gift for the holidays.

Speaking of gifts for the bakers on your list, here are 10 great ideas for those who love to bake and folks who want to learn how.

The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day – A perfect place for both experienced bakers and new comers to start. We also have a GF version: Gluten-Free Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day.

Bread Baking Craftsy Class – An in depth video class that will guide you through the mixing, shaping and baking of our Master recipe. We’ll make dozens of breads, including everything from a boule to sticky buns. You’ll see our tips for shaping properly and getting the best results from all your breads, no matter which dough you use. If you buy the class through our site you’ll get $20 off the price of the class. Hope you’ll join us.

More gift ideas at the end of the post.

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Raisin Walnut Bread (Baked in an Emile Henry Bread Baker with Red Star Platinum Yeast)

Raisin Walnut Bread | Breadin5 14

I have to admit when Emile Henry asked if I wanted to try this new covered loaf pan, I was a bit skeptical about the claims they were making. It’s a gorgeous loaf pan, but would it really bake a bread with a perfectly crisp, shiny crust on the top and bottom, just because of the holes in the lid and on the bottom of the ceramic baking vessel? Well, I’m here to say I was wrong to judge without trying, again. Just as I was wrong about the crock pot baking great bread, this loaf pan really does bake a fantastic loaf. The crust is thin and golden brown, without having to add steam or remove the cover during baking. It’s all about the holes! You can see the same loaf baked in a regular loaf pan at the bottom of the post and see for yourself just how well it works.

I used Red Star Platinum yeast to mix up this raisin walnut bread dough, and I loved the results with this loaf.

Bread Baker, Book and Platinum Giveaway | Breadin5

Because I loved this loaf pan and the bread I baked so much we asked Emile Henry and Red Star to participate in a Holiday Baking Giveaway. Leave a comment below and you can win the Bread Baker, a case of Platinum Yeast and a copy of our The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day (or our Gluten-Free Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day if you prefer). The winner must be in the USA and all our normal contest rules apply.  Contest is finished and Michele was our winner! Continue reading

Thanksgiving Recipe Round Up

Pumpkin Brioche | Bread in 5
‘Over the river and through the wood,
To grandfather’s house we go;
The horse knows the way
To carry the sleigh
Through the white and drifted snow.

Over the river and through the wood –
Now grandmother’s cap I spy!
Hurrah for the fun!
Is the pudding done?
Hurrah for the pumpkin-pie!’ (Thanksgiving Day, by Lydia Maria Child)
(Of course, at our house, we would be cheering for pumpkin brioche instead of pie.)

Over the years, we’ve done quite a few posts that are Thanksgiving related. Here’s a round up of all our recipes, and also some from around the web. If you bake anything this Thanksgiving from our site or from our books, take a photo and then tag it with #breadin5 so we can see what you’re making! Updated 11/27/15: here’s one more, a recipe for home-made stuffing from your own bread (click to view)! Continue reading

Thanks EveryDayCheapskate.com: great review of “New Artisan” and, an Artisan Baker’s Gift Basket…

Mary Hunt blogs at EveryDayCheapskate.com, and she’s put up a marvelous review of “The New Artisan Bread…” When you visit, scroll down and you’ll see the holiday gift basket she’s put together, plus some very kind words:

“I may as well be president of the Artisan-In-Five fan club. for how this book and its method changed my life…”

Mary Hunt, EveryDayCheapskate.com

Thanks Mary!

Pumpkin Spice Monkey Bread

pumpkin spice monkey bread | bread in 5

We’ve had a lovely Autumn here in Minnesota, with warm weather lasting far into October. However, November has brought about a winter chill, and with it the desire to head to the kitchen and bake with cinnamon and pumpkin. Often I turn to cinnamon rolls or caramel rolls, but I decided this time around to make Monkey Bread.

Monkey Bread is easy to make; it’s basically a pull-apart cinnamon roll baked in a Bundt or loaf pan. Zoe’s posted a standard recipe before, but today I’m doing one made with pumpkin spices, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves, and topped with a cream cheese icing. It’s the perfect way to celebrate the coming cold.

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Ghoulish Breadsticks for Halloween!

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This week is the one time a year when we purposefully make our food look creepy. Halloween is great fun for the kids, but we adults love to play with our food too, and its great fun to watch people squirm just a bit. Even though these breadsticks are ghoulish, they are crunchy and delicious as well. Stick a few in the lunch box to give your kids a little Halloween thrill at school. Continue reading

Braided Savory Spinach, Feta, and Pine Nut Dinner Pastry

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This started out as a dessert post, but then I looked out the window, and it’s October in Minnesota, and fresh berries from the U-pick farm are long over with.  My family needs something warming tonight, so I dropped my almond cream and raspberry idea, and jogged to the store for spinach and feta to go with the pine nuts I already had in the house.  Not only is this thing delicious, but I stashed gobs of spinach into it and it was super kid-friendly anyway.  Continue reading

Craftsy Class Giveaway!

Craftsy giveaway

It is coming up on baking season and we want to get you all ready and in the mood. As you may have heard, we did a Craftsy video series that shows all the tips and techniques for creating our favorite breads. The class is based on our Master recipe from The New Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, but the course is helpful for baking any breads and pizzas from all of our books.

As a big THANK YOU to our Breadin5 community, we’re giving away our Craftsy Artisan Bread in Minutes class to a random winner. All you have to do is click on the link below to enter. Good luck and enjoy the class. Continue reading

How to Slash Dough – Video

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Slashing your dough properly creates a beautiful loaf of bread, but can also help it rise in the oven. If your slashes are not deep enough, the dough may tear open on the top or bottom of the loaf. Leaving you with bread that tastes delicious, but doesn’t live up to its artistic potential. The loaf can also end up being a touch dense if you don’t slash deep enough, because it won’t open up and make way for a dramatic oven spring. So, for the most beautiful crust and best interior crumb, you’ll want to follow these few tricks for slashing. Continue reading

No-Knead Peanut Butter Bread (can swap almond butter)

peanut butter bread | bread in 5

Even as an adult, peanut butter and jelly is still a favorite combination. A few times a year I’ll still make a ‘pb & j’ with the kids for lunch, enjoying some junior high nostalgia along with a glass of milk and a handful of potato chips. I decided maybe it was time to class peanut butter up a bit, by turning it into an almost-brioche loaf that is perfect for toasting, or a sandwich bread with extra peanut butter power. Peanut butter swirl buns are also a good idea, and I think French toast might have to be next on my to-do list. Continue reading